2014: it's electric!

I spent yesterday dreaming and planning for 2014 in the office of a friend of a friend in Times Square. I've never worked in Times Square and from time to time I'd look down at Broadway below where tourists and New Year's enthusiasts circled the block with warm coffee and souvenirs. I was in the center of the city and yet in my heart I felt very, very far away.

2013 has been an intense year for us and as I worked my way through this 2014 planning exercise yesterday I realized how much it was truly a year of rebuilding. Well, first it was a year in which my entire identity was leveled by parenthood. And then from the gaping hole that was left behind, it was a rebuilding project in which the basement and foundation of who I am are now built to code, built not based on outside approval but rather from within myself.

And that, my friends, is no small victory. I tear up as I write this because I didn't even know that was what was happening while I was in it. If I had realized, I would have made a project plan to efficiently move through it. But that is the difficulty in depression or confusing times in general - we who enjoy paved roads and street signs are left scratching blankly at the cold wilderness.

I've learned so much about myself this year, that I'm a massive perfectionist, that I rely so much on external validation, that all I want to do is make other people comfortable. All of this to avoid prioritizing myself.

Last year about this time I did some journaling about the future 2013 and when I reread my answers to these questions yesterday I nearly fell on the floor with shock. Nearly every single thing I had written had come true. I knew deep down what I needed to work through, but was unable (or unwilling?) to deal with it head-on. Well, CAREFUL WHAT YOU WRITE IN A JOURNAL, FRIENDS. Had I known that the year would have been as insane as it turned out to be, I'm not sure I would have been so grandiose in my predictions!

The Team '13 theme came true. The team showed up. Sometimes it was a friend, family member, babysitter, or colleague. Sometimes it was a book. Sometimes it was getting myself to church or in front of the TV to watch the Oprah network. For about 6 months the team included a therapist. I include chai lattes and two cats on the team as well. Blog readers and strangers who held the door and my ever-supportive husband and my turkey of a son. Every day I needed something different and every day it showed up, meeting me until I was able to give back myself. I will always be grateful for the support this year, truly.

So where in the hell does one go from here?

From a year of rebuilding, we move to a year of POWER. I'm set straight. I'm poised now, ready to move forward with a full heart and a solid foundation. And this time I'm acutely aware of my energy - both when the tank is empty or what to do when I've got tons to spend. I'm getting better at saying NO when I need to and doing it UP when I want to say yes.

The only thing that held me back all these years was me. It's time to work with my energy instead of against it.

Welcome to the theme for next year, friends... 2014: it's electric. I can't wait to write all about it here, with you, for you. And for me.

I'll end with a story.

Two weeks ago I flew to Toronto for the day for Plucky work. As I walked through LGA on my way home that evening, I caught a glimpse of myself in a window and the whole thing just dawned on me. I was living the life I literally dreamed about. Foreign travel? Independence? A loving family at home? Running my own project? Supporting myself and my family with my work? CHECK, EFFING CHECK.

The photo above is from that day, when I saw my stuff on the chair next to me and wanted to high-five myself because of how far I'd come in 2013.

All I hope for you, dear readers, is self-high-fives as often as possible in 2014. Thanks for reading... and happy, happy new year.